[Monoclonal antibody therapy for malignant lymphoma]

Med Klin (Munich). 2005 Jan 15;100(1):14-24. doi: 10.1007/s00063-005-1115-0.
[Article in German]


The treatment options for patients with malignant lymphoma have been substantially enriched by the development of B-cell-specific monoclonal antibodies. One of the reasons for the attractiveness of this approach is the different mode of action of these antibodies compared to chemotherapy: they can exert tumor-suppressive effects by at least three major mechanisms: an intrinsic cytotoxic activity, antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC), and activation of complement-dependent cytolysis (CDC). These monoclonal antibodies can be applied in an unconjugated form or as a carrier of cytotoxic drugs or radioisotopes. The chimeric anti-CD20 antibody rituximab has a direct anti-lymphoma activity, and is highly active in indolent and aggressive lymphoma, in particular in combination with chemotherapy. The anti-CD52 antibody alemtuzumab is effective in the treatment of patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). Another attractive approach is to link anti-CD20 antibodies to radioisotopes, thereby exploiting the radiosensitivity of malignant lymphomas: encouraging results were already presented for the yttrium-90-((90)Y-)labeled anti-CD20 antibody ibritumomab tiuxetan as well as for the iodine-131-((131)I-)labeled anti-CD20 antibody tositumomab.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • English Abstract
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antibodies, Bispecific / immunology
  • Antibodies, Bispecific / therapeutic use
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / immunology
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal / therapeutic use*
  • Antibody-Dependent Cell Cytotoxicity / immunology
  • Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols / therapeutic use
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Lymphoma, B-Cell / drug therapy
  • Lymphoma, Non-Hodgkin / drug therapy*
  • Lymphoma, Non-Hodgkin / immunology
  • Radioimmunotherapy
  • Remission Induction
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Antibodies, Bispecific
  • Antibodies, Monoclonal